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– by Joseph Jammer Medina

At one point in a woman’s life they have a silly egotistical daydream of sorts, thinking about how wonderful it would be if two hunky men were fighting for her affection, preferably while said lady is sitting atop a throne watching it all from below. Granted, it wouldn’t be ideal to carry out in the real world due to the many complicated scenarios, but it is a thought. Twentieth Century Fox’s new picture “This Means War” takes that fantasy and throws a basket full of explosives at it with McG in the director’s chair in the new action-comedy. And in typical harlequin-like fashion, we don’t have a good story without a couple of attractive-looking male leads in Chris Pine and Tom Hardy, topped off with the talented Reese Witherspoon in the middle of the love triangle. Poor thing.

In “This Means War” we follow Tuck (Hardy) and FDR (Pine), the two best spies in the business with a sharp sense of style to boot. They’ve got everything that they need, including each other as best buddies, but it all is put to the test when sweet and sexy Lauren (Witherspoon) slips into their lives. That’s not to mention that little terrorist threat that Heinrich (Til Schweiger) is setting up while the love triangle blossoms. Not only is their friendship put to the test by this woman but they must manage to figure it all out and try to save all of Los Angeles at the same time.

Most of the ridiculously good-looking cast (minus Chris Pine), and director McG, of “This Means War” were able to sit down with a few of the press to discuss the upcoming live-action comedy where they discussed an array of things that does not include why Tom Hardy was rubbing his face against the mic at one point like a cat. Some found it a little irritating to see but not this reporter.

You had good chemistry with the other actors. Was that there from thevery beginning or was it something you worked on rehearsal?

Tom Hardy: No, that was just acting. I’m quite alpha, and he was the actor of thefilm so I did my best to accommodate that. No, I was playing with him. Itwas just acting, he’s a good guy. It was fun.

McG: Listen, I think put simply, there’s a great old Robert Altman adage thatthe best thing to do as a director is to cast the film properly. And if youhave Reese and you have Tom and you have Chris, driving that triangle andyou have Chelsea to come in and steal scenes, it makes everything very, verysimple and it flows from there. And we talked about “oh the picture’s sopretty,” and the costuming or the sounds or the explosions are fun, that’sall easy. We can handle that, but I cannot fabricate chemistry. And thechemistry that these two girls have from a place of buddy dynamics, I wouldjust listen to them walking back to video village and go let’s cherry pickthat and use it as a scene because that’s incredible. And as far as thechemistry that Tom and Chris had, they are indeed both very alpha and theyrespect each other but one would never acquiesce to one another and it was ahealthy competitive spirit that I think is in the service of the picture.

Tom Hardy: Just teasing. It was good fun to play with.

Reese, what’s you take on online dating and would you ever date two atone time? Do you recommend that for a guy?

Reese Witherspoon: For a guy? I wouldn’t have any recommendations for a guy. But for a girl, I mean I think a lot of people Internet date. That’s what the commercials say, right? One in 5 people meet each other online or something?

McG: I know, the least you can say is, “hey I’m really into going to bed at 9 o’clock and I like zebras and you know, role playing.” And then you can get after it in that regard and you can narrow it down to some degree.

Tom Hardy: I think it’s an apparent, I think the whole thing is apparent. I thinkonline dating is a way of procuring people, you know what I mean? LikeFacebook, Myspace. It’s a way that people to connect out. And procure smallchildren and sometimes you know, dodgy relationships. I don’t think it’svery healthy. Online dating is cool, but I think Facebook and Myspace is alittle off key.

Reese, was there anything he wanted you to do that you didn’t care todo?

Tom Hardy: Pine.

Reese Witherspoon: No, not really.

McG: She’s fearless. She’s given birth twice, she can do anything.

Tell us if you had any injuries during the fight scenes and how wellyou handled it.

Tom Hardy: There were two fight scenes. One in the restaurant and the rest of itwas just hanging onto the car. And the beginning – ah, the beginning, the helicopter.  But it wasn’t a fight scene.

McG: I think she means when you fought him.

Tom Hardy: Oh, it was good fun, yeah, it was good fun. Chris is a good fighter, youknow. He has this kind of jazz-hands style, which is kind of scary if you’regoing up against something from “The West Side Story.” You got to keep youreyes well-peeled because they can come at any angle, especially when youhave that much of the dancer naturally in you. So, to work with that kind ofskill set – because I’m used to a different kind of form of boxing, MuayThai. I had to look out for myself because he has fast hands. But it wassafe.

McG: Yeah, but there was a fun moment where – Listen, again, Tom’s verygracious, you know, from the fight scene at the end and you say, “where yougoing?” and you smack the hell out of Chris’s character.

Tom Hardy:I smacked him on the face.

McG: And that was a big moment, because you can’t hurt Tom. You can throw himoff a truck, and he’ll kind of tumble along and he’ll bend the other finger.

Tom Hardy: That’s not true. It hurts, but I won’t show it.

McG: And you know, we had to create a world in which everybody was comfortablewith moving forward with that, smacking each other up a little bit andfalling off second tiers and smashing into tables and doing everything hewent through. But he’s a fighter by trade.

Tom Hardy: But Chris is better with a weapon than I am. If you look at himtechnically in the film, he’s actually great with pistol work and weapons,truth be told and he’s a lot tougher than he looks, if that even matters.Which it does.

Reese, in your other films you portray this girl next door, but in thisone you’re being a little sexier.

Reese Witherspoon: It’s all McG’s fault. His cajoling, his constant texting.

McG: Listen. Do we all understand that Reese Witherspoon is a capable,intelligent woman? Devoted mother, we know all these things. And I don’tthink that any woman who’s beautiful should apologize for being sobeautiful. And it’s clear that she’s so good, her goodness precedes her andshe’s talented, she has a golden statue to back that up. And I find her tobe so sexy and so foxy, that it was a thrill to work with Russell Carpenter,who you know shot on “Titanic,” he shot some beautiful girls in his time,and he knew how to shoot her in a way and we created a platform of comfortand I defer to the crowd, you guys think Reese looks sexy in the picture.

Reese Witherspoon: Oh McG. Thank you.

McG: Tom, what do you think? I want to hear about Tom’s paintball experience.

Tom Hardy: I think she looks sexy without the picture, you know? Just thought shewas sexy. But paintball in the nuts hurts.

“This Means War” is out in theaters everywhere this Friday.

Joseph Jammer Medina is an author, podcaster, and editor-in-chief of LRM. A graduate of Chapman University’s Dodge College of Film and Television, Jammer’s always had a craving for stories. From movies, television, and web content to books, anime, and manga, he’s always been something of a story junkie.